Social Studies Research and Practice
Volume 2, Number 1, Spring 2007
Critical Race Theory and the Teaching of American History: Power, Perspective, and Practice
University of South Carolina Aiken
History classrooms are not neutral: They are contested arenas where legitimacy and hegemony battle for historical supremacy. The representation of marginalized groups within history classrooms is dependent upon the willingness of individual teachers to present material that accentuates contributions, challenges historical givens, empowers the marginalized, and, above all, raises awareness of and reflection upon race and racial images and the impact they have on the historical interpretations of American history. By using Critical Race Theory, which seeks to reduce marginalization through the recognition and promotion of historically disenfranchised peoples, social studies teachers can create classrooms that challenge historical dogmas and offer counter narratives to historical events. This article defines and situates Critical Race Theory and uses the Indian Removal Act of 1830 to illustrate how history and the historical events of “others” can be recognized and valued.
About the Author(s)…
Timothy Lintner is an Assistant Professor of Social Studies Education at the University of South Carolina Aiken. Prior to coming to USCA, he taught high school social studies in Los Angeles, California. At USCA, Dr. Lintner is charged with teaching elementary, secondary, and graduate level social studies methods courses. His work on social studies pedagogy and theory can be found in The Social Studies, Social Studies and the Young Learner, and The Journal of Social Studies Research. His research interests focus on teacher perceptions of social studies and fostering interactive technologies in social studies classrooms. Contact information: firstname.lastname@example.org.